Afghanistan + 2 more

Afghanistan Flash Update: Daily Brief: COVID-19, No. 56 (25 June 2020)

Originally published


Key Messages:

  • People confirmed to have COVID-19: 30,175 (as of 2pm, 25 June. Source: Afghanistan Ministry of Public Health - MoPH)

  • Deaths from COVID-19: 675

  • Samples tested: 68,626

Key concerns: Border crossing areas, in-country testing capacity, protective equipment for frontline workers, commodity prices, messaging and rumour management, international air services

Situation Overview:

MoPH data shows that 30,175 people across all 34 provinces in Afghanistan are now confirmed to have COVID19. Some 10,174 people have recovered, and 675 people have died (18 of whom are healthcare workers). 68,626 people out of the population of 37.6 million have been tested. Afghanistan has a test-positivity-rate (positive tests as a percentage of total tests) of more than 43 per cent. Almost five per cent of the total confirmed COVID19 cases are among healthcare staff. The majority of the deaths were people between the ages of 40 and 69. Men in this age group represent more than 54 per cent of all COVID-19-related deaths. With a fragile health system, a developing economy and underlying vulnerabilities, the people of Afghanistan are facing extreme consequences from the COVID19 pandemic. Due to limited public health resources and testing capacity, confirmed cases of and deaths from COVID19 are likely under reported overall in Afghanistan. Cases are expected to continue to increase over the weeks ahead as community transmission escalates, creating grave implications for Afghanistan’s economy and people’s well-being. Kabul remains the most affected part of the country in terms of confirmed cases, followed by Hirat, Balkh, Nangarhar and Kandahar.

Hospitals report challenges maintaining or expanding their facilities’ capacity to treat patients with COVID-19. These challenges are related to supply of personal protective equipment (PPE), testing, staffing and medical supplies; maintaining or expanding facility capacity; and financial concerns. Humanitarian partners urge the Government of Afghanistan to ensure healthcare staff have adequate personal protection and to share distribution plans for existing medical equipment and PPE with humanitarian partners.

As the country battles COVID-19, people in the east and north are also feeling the impacts of flooding. On 23 June, heavy rain triggered localised flash floods in east Afghanistan (particularly Kunar, Laghman and Nangarhar provinces), that have resulted in casualties and material damage. Based on initial assessments, approximately 100 families are expected to be impacted. Although there are currently sufficient humanitarian supplies available to respond to the situation, partners are encouraged to replenish stocks ahead of the COVID-19 peak.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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